Young, ambitious and highly talented musicians and music students from Europe and around the world form a band for one year. The band is regularly taught by the most famous and successful international jazz musicians. This one-year program is a career boost for the participants and supports them in developing their own and outstanding voice as artists. The 4 training phases per year last about one week and consist of various modules, such as workshops, individual lessons, concerts and recording sessions.
The program is perfect for those who are already established in their home music scene and want to stay in touch with it while at the same time expanding their international network and deepening their artistic skills.
The training phases are free of charge for the band members. The prerequisite for membership in the Gutenberg Jazz Collective is the successful completion of an audition.
Interview with Sebastian Sternal
What´s the artistic concept behind GJC?
The Gutenberg Jazz Collective is a top-rate ensemble of young jazz musicians, who get the opportunity to deepen their artistic skills in a one year program. This happens through interaction and inspiration of the ensemble among each other, and also through encounters with established jazz greats: They will coach the ensemble and develop the artistic fingerprint of each band member.
In addition, there will be an enormous networking effect for all participants - and of course synergy effects will be created along the way, which will strengthen the jazz scenes in Mainz and Rhineland-Palatinate.
What exactly happens during a workshop session?
The Collective will meet for several one week sessions in Mainz. Every session starts with rehearsals partly among themselves, partly under my guidance. This also includes the preparation of the guest artist´s music who joins after a few days to work intensively with the ensemble for 3 days. At the end of each working phase the guest artist and the Collective will perform together live on stage. The guest artist and the Collective also meet the regular students of the jazz department, thus providing many moments for mutual inspiration.
What a GJC band member can expect from the program?
All band members have the opportunity to deepen their artistic skills in working with top-class fellow musicians and to gain valuable impulses in their encounters with established jazz greats. The program is structured in a way that makes it possible to maintain contacts with their local scenes while still developing and strengthen an international network - an ideal combination!
What opportunities arise from the program - for the musicians and the city of Mainz?
There is a long jazz tradition in Mainz, especially recently it has developed greatly and has become more and more visible. Great musicians study at the School of Music of JGU Mainz and its jazz department, many among them decide to stay in Mainz after their studies, thus becoming a part of the scene. This is how the young jazz collective „Tonkult” was created. Through the Gutenberg Jazz Collective (and the whole Jazz Campus Mainz program) Mainz should appear even more on the international jazz map.
Lage Lund is acclaimed as one of the finest guitarists of his generation, and one of the more compelling jazz artists today. A regular in the “Rising star – Guitar” category in the Downbeat Critic’s Poll, he has been hailed by Pat Metheny as a favorite young guitarist, and is “all music and all soul” according to Russell Malone - one of the judges who awarded Lund top prize in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition.
Armed with a growing and impressive body of original compositions, and mastery of the standard repertoire - Lund swings with great authority displaying a staggering harmonic sophistication and a singularly fluid voice as a soloist. He also brings a “casually magnetic” presence to the stage, “channeling reticence into a whisper-quiet mystique” and "balances his abundant proficiencies with an aesthetic of gleaming calm" (New York Times).
Born and raised in Norway, Lund relocated to Boston after high school on a scholarship to Berklee College of Music. In 2002 he moved to New York and soon became the first electric guitarist ever to enroll at the Juilliard School of Music. In the years since his Monk Competition victory, he has become a sought-after sideman with the David Sanchez Quartet, the Maria Schneider Orchestra, Mark Turner, Seamus Blake and many more.
After a series of three releases featuring bassist Ben Street and drummer Bill Stewart 2019 sees the release of "Terrible Animals”. Joined by a never-before-convened, top-of-the-pyramid rhythm section (Sullivan Fortner, piano; Larry Grenadier, bass;Tyshawn Sorey, drums) it is the most compositionally ambitious and daringly performed of Lage Lund's five albums on Criss Cross. Ten far-flung originals that elicit the full measure of their creativity , spurring Lund - who makes ingenious use of effects within his flow - to some of his most dynamic and varied playing on record.
Through frequent appearances and tours stateside and throughout Europe, Asia and around the world, Lund has ascended to the highest ranks as a performer and a creative force. He is among those setting the agenda for jazz improvisation in the 21st century.
Joey Baron, born in Richmond, Virginia, started playing at age 9. Encouragement from his elementary school music teacher led to private studies with local musicians. Joey’s first musical experiences were playing along with his stereo record player in the park. By the time he was twelve, Baron was also working with local bands on weekends.
After a very brief period at berklee school of music in Boston he moved to Los Angeles, California to work with his idol Carmen McRae. During this period, Joey also worked regularly with Chet Baker, Blue Mitchell, Leroy Vinnegar, Andy Simpkins, Eugene Wright, Hampton Hawes, Lenny Breau, Lou Rawls, and Al Jarreau.
Relocating to nyc in 1983, he quickly established himself as a vital contributor to New York’s creative music scene. Barons talents during this period were welcomed by such diverse musicians / artists as: John Zorn’s Naked City, Toots Thielemans, Red Rodney- Ira Sullivan, David Bowie, Jay McShann, Big Joe Turner, Al Hirt, Laurie Anderson, Pat Martino, Dr John, Allen Ginsburg and Lou Reed.
Over the years, he has developed a unique approach to making music with the drum set, evident in his extended tenures with jazz icons Jim Hall, Steve Kuhn, and John Abercrombie. His long-term collaboration with Bill Frisell was recently documented and released on relative pitch records (“JUST LISTEN”).
Presently, Mr. Baron is actively touring with the Jakob Bro trio (Thomas Morgan-bass) and the duo project with percussionist Robyn Schulkowsky. Their latest work is documented on Intakt records “Now You Hear Me”.
Ongoing projects include solo concerts, workshops, Sound Prints with Joe Lovano and Dave Douglas, as well as various festival concerts with John Zorn.
Ben van Gelder (1988) is regarded internationally as an authority on the alto saxophone. Peers and critics alike praise him for his unique sound, lyricism and personal approach to composition. His music is firmly rooted in jazz tradition but embraces many other musical genres and disciplines.
Ben moved to New York when he was seventeen, his teachers included Guillermo Klein, Jason Moran and Lee Konitz and he has since played and recorded with many contemporary jazz luminaries including David Binney, Mark Turner, Ambrose Akinmusire and Ben Street.
Based in New York City, Linda May Han Oh is a bassist/composer who has performed and recorded with artists such as Pat Metheny, Kenny Barron, Joe Lovano, Dave Douglas, Terri Lyne Carrington, Steve Wilson, Geri Allen and Vijay Iyer.
Originally born in Malaysia and raised in Boorloo (Perth), Western Australia, she has received many awards such as a 2022 Deutscher Jazz Preis and the 2020 APRA award for Best New Jazz Work. She was voted the Bassist of the Year for 2018-2021 by the Jazz Journalist’s Association and in 2019 by Hothouse Magazine as well as 2022 Bassist of the Year by Jazztimes.
Linda has written for large and small ensembles as well as for film, participating in the BMI Film Composers Workshop, Sundance Labs at Skywalker Ranch and composing for Sabrina McCormick's short films, "A Good Egg" and “FracKtured.” Linda also composed and produced music for a collaborative film project with non-profit, “Hoperaisers” based in Korogocho, Kenya by film-maker Kizito Gamba and contributed music to his latest documentary “Calling the Shots” co-directed by Kore Abong about aspiring African women in the film-industry.
Linda is currently Associate Professor at the Berklee College of Music in the bass department and is also part of the Institute for Jazz and Gender Justice led by Terri Lyne Carrington.
She was recently featured in a quartet in the Pixar movie "Soul" playing bass under the musical direction of Jon Batiste (The Late Show with Stephen Colbert) alongside drummer Roy Haynes.
SAVE THE DATE! Auditions for the next Gutenberg Jazz Collective: April 11 & 12, 2024
Gutenberg Jazz Collective 2023
Tabea Kind - Bass (DE)
Tabea Kind, born in Karlsruhe, studied School Music in Freiburg from 2017 - 2022.
Currently she is studying at Jazzcampus Basel with Larry Grenadier, Bänz Oester and Jeff Ballard.
Tabea Kind plays with Will Bartlett Trio, Baptiste Stanek Trio, EDNA, Flo Pfisters Tiny Orchestra and the BundesJazzOrchester.
Leon Hattori - Piano (DE)
Leon Hattori, born in 1998, is a pianist and composer based in Cologne, where he is currently studying at the Conservatory.
He has worked and recorded with Florian Ross, Tamara Lukasheva and Shannon Barnett.
Leon Hattori was part of the BundesJazzOrchester from 2020 - 2023.
Kateryna Kravchenko - Vocal (UKR)
Kateryna Kravchenko is a Ukrainian jazz vocalist and composer born in 1999. At the age of 18, she began her studies in Jazz Vocal Performance at the Dresden College of Music. From 2020 to 2022, Kateryna was a regular member of the National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Germany (BuJazzO). Since August 2022, she has been an exchange student at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Sweden.
Oscar Georges - Drums (FR)
Oscar Georges began a classical percussion course at the CNR in Lyon at the age of 12 with Attilio Terlizzi as his teacher.
In 2015, he moved to Brussels and studied for 5 years at the conservatory (KCB). After a year of Erasmus with Jonas Burgwinkel in Cologne (HFMT), he obtained his Master's degree in 2020.
Jack Towse - Trumpet (US)
20-year-old trumpet player Jack Towse started playing the trumpet at age 10. By age 12, he started studying classical and jazz trumpet at the Manhattan School of Music Precollege.
Currently, Jack is pursuing his undergraduate degree in Jazz Studies at the Juilliard School.
Maxence Ravelomanantsoa - Saxophon (FR)
Born in Rennes, France in 1989, Maxence started to play saxophone at the age of 7.
He pursued his studies at the conservatory of Saint-Brieuc in 2007 and then moved to Paris where he studied at the conservatory of Paris from which he graduated in 2011.
In 2017, he released his first record as a leader.
Kris Davis is a critically acclaimed pianist and composer described by The New York Times as a beacon for “deciding where to hear jazz on a given night.”
Since 2003, Davis has released 23 recordings as a leader or co-leader. She has collaborated with Terri Lyne Carrington, John Zorn, Craig Taborn, Ingrid Laubrock, Tyshawn Sorey, Tom Rainey, Eric Revis, Johnathan Blake, Stephan Crump and Eric McPherson, among others.
Davis began studying classical piano at age 6. In her early teens, she discovered her love of jazz through the music of Herbie Hancock and Keith Jarrett, leading her to study jazz at the University of Toronto. She then completed a master’s degree in classical composition from the City College of New York in 2011.
In 2019, her album “Diatom Ribbons” was named jazz album of the year by both the New York Times and the NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll. She was also named 2020 Pianist of the Year, 2017 Rising Star Pianist and 2018 Rising Star Artist by DownBeat, and 2020 Pianist and Composer of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association.
In 2016, Davis launched Pyroclastic Records to support artists whose expression expands beyond the commercial sphere. She subsequently formed a nonprofit organization to support the label’s work.
Davis was named a 2021 Doris Duke Artist along with Wayne Shorter and Danilo Perez. She has also received multiple commissions for composing new works from The Shifting Foundation, The Jazz Gallery and the Canada Council for the Arts.
Billy Hart & Ben Street
William “Billy” Hart (born November 29, 1940 in Washington, D.C.) is a jazz drummer and educator who has performed with some of the most important jazz musicians in history.
Early on Hart performed in Washington, D.C. with soul artists such as Otis Redding and Sam and Dave, and then later with Buck Hill and Shirley Horn, and was a sideman with the Montgomery Brothers (1961), Jimmy Smith (1964–1966), and Wes Montgomery (1966–1968). Hart moved to New York in 1968, where he recorded with McCoy Tyner, Wayne Shorter, and Joe Zawinul, and played with Eddie Harris, Pharoah Sanders, and Marian McPartland.
Hart was a member of Herbie Hancock’s sextet (1969–1973), and played with McCoy Tyner (1973–1974), Stan Getz (1974–1977), and Quest (1980s), in addition to extensive freelance playing (including recording with Miles Davis on 1972’s On the Corner).
Billy Hart works steadily and teaches widely. Since the early 1990s Hart spends considerable time at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and is adjunct faculty at the New England Conservatory of Music and Western Michigan University. He also conducts private lessons through The New School and New York University.
He leads the Billy Hart Quartet with Mark Turner, Ethan Iverson, and Ben Street, which has released two albums on ECM Records.
Ben Street studied at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston with Miroslav Vitous and Dave Holland before moving to New York in 1991. He has performed and toured with many notable artists including Danilo Pérez, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Roswell Rudd, Lee Konitz, David Sanchez, James Moody, Mark Turner, Frank Foster, Clark Terry, Junior Cook, and Jimmy Scott, among many others.
Street's selected discography includes The Next Step, The Enemies of Energy, Heartcore (Kurt Rosenwinkel), Til Then, Live at the Jazz Showcase (Danilo Pérez), Coral, Cultural Survival (David Sanchez), La Bikina (Ed Simon), Morenica (Anthony Coleman), Holiday Songs and Lullabies (Shawn Colvin), At Last (Cyndi Lauper), Guilty (Ethan Iverson, Jorge Rossy, and Chris Cheek), Widening Circles (Barney McAll), Dust (Ben Monder Trio), Space Cowboys Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, Purple Violets (Sam Rivers/Kresten Osgood), and Quartet (Billy Hart).
GRAMMY-nominated, Brooklyn-based and North Carolina-bred Becca Stevens has established an outstanding career for herself, blending an effortless vocal talent with exquisite compositions that draw inspiration from pop, jazz, indie-rock, and traditional Appalachian folk music.
Her most recent album, WONDERBLOOM (GroundUP ’20, which she produced and engineered with Nic Hard), displays Stevens’ skill of layering profound and discerning lyrics with funky and dance-ready beats in a record that Jazz Magazine described as “sophisticated and sensual pop” and The Mail on Sunday said is “Glamorous… semi-electric pop Prince might approve of.” The track “Slow Burn” from WONDERBLOOM was nominated for a GRAMMY for Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals in 2020.
Becca continues to push the boundaries of convention, with her music weaving together music from her youth with the expertise of jazz composition she's picked up from some of the greats. Along with her solo output, Becca is a highly-respected collaborator who has worked with the likes of David Crosby, Jacob Collier, Michael League (Snarky Puppy), Brad Mehldau, Chris Thile, Esperanza Spalding, Attacca Quartet, Laura Mvula, José James, Cory Wong, Vince Mendoza and Timo Andres. She refused to be labeled and continues to defy the notion of what a singer-songwriter should be. Instead, she dictates to the rest of what we should (and should not) expect.
Born in Vancouver and raised in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Ingrid Jensen has been hailed as one of the most gifted trumpeters of her generation. After graduating from Berklee College of Music in 1989, she went on to record three highly acclaimed CDs for the ENJA record label, soon becoming one of the most in-demand trumpet players on the global jazz scene.
Jensen is also a dedicated jazz educator, having taught trumpet at the University of Michigan and Peabody Conservatory, performing and lecturing as a guest artist with the Thelonious Monk Institute High School group featuring Herbie Hancock
Since her victory at the Carmine Caruso Trumpet Competition in 1995, Jensen has since sat on the judges’ panel twice for said competition. She is regularly invited to trumpet festivals around the world and recently served as Artist-in-Residence at the prestigious Monterey Jazz Festival, performing with her own quintet and giving tribute to the great Geri Allen, with fellow Artist-in-Residence, Tia Fuller.
One of Ingrid’s most frequent and closest collaborators is her sister, saxophonist and composer Christine Jensen. The sisters' release, Infinitude, featuring the brilliant guitarist Ben Monder, received heavy praise from the Jazz Community as did Ingrid’s latest recording, Invisible Sounds.
The album, honoring the late great Kenny Wheeler, received critical acclaim and led to a feature on NPR’s Jazz Night in America hosted by Christian McBride.
Gutenberg Jazz Collective 2022
(From left to right)
Justin Zitt (Mannheim, GER) - Piano
Nico Klöffer (Cologne, GER) - Bass
Aitzi Cofre Real (London, UK) - Vocals
Finn Wiest (Cologne, GER / New York City, US) - Drums
Jakob Bänsch (Cologne, GER) - Trumpet
The GJC band - live on stage with Kris Davis, on June 21st, 2022
Praised by his mentor Herbie Hancock as "a musical painter," Lionel Loueke combines harmonic sophistication, soaring melody, a deep knowledge of African music, and conventional and extended guitar techniques to create a warm and evocative sound of his own. JazzTimes wrote "Loueke's lines are smartly formed and deftly executed. His ear-friendly melodicism draws both from traditional African sources and a lifetime of closely studying the likes of Jim Hall and George Benson, and his rhythmic shifts come quickly and packed with surprises."
Grammy-nominated saxophonist, composer and producer Ben Wendel was born in Vancouver, Canada and grew up in Los Angeles. He currently lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.Highlights of his career include tours, performances and recordings with artists such as Tigran Hamasyan, Antonio Sanchez, Gerald Clayton, Eric Harland, Taylor Eigsti, Linda May Han Oh, Moonchild, Louis Cole, Daedelus, Snoop Dogg and Prince.
Ben is a founding member of the Grammy-nominated band Kneebody.
As a composer, he received an ASCAP Jazz Composer Award, the Chamber Music America "New Works Grant" 2008, 2011 and 2017 and was awarded the Victor Lynch-Staunton Award of the Canada Council For The Arts. He was also co-composer of the film score for John Krasinski's adaptation of David Foster Wallace's "Brief Interviews With Hideous Men".
In addition, Ben collaborated with conductor Kent Nagano on a number of concerts for the "Festspiel Plus" in Munich. From 2008 to 2015, he produced a cross-genre series at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica, California.
Ben Wendel was the producer of the Grammy-nominated album "Life Forum" by pianist Gerald Clayton.
For ten years, the uncompromising individualist Sullivan has been one of the hipsters of the music scene. The GRAMMY-winning artist received international recognition as a pianist and producer for his joint work on The Window (Mack Avenue, 2018) alongside multiple GRAMMY winner, singer and composer Cecile McLorin Salvant. His recordings Moments Preserved (Decca, 2018) and Aria (Impulse!, 2015), released as bandleaders, were acclaimed by critics and audiences.
Last year, Fortner was awarded in several categories in the DownBeat. He has worked with the likes of Wynton Marsalis, Paul Simon, Diane Reeves, Etienne Charles, John Scofield, Peter Bernstein ....
Whether as a soloist or as the conductor of an orchestra, Fortner grasps harmony and rhythmic ideas with inexhaustible curiosity and incorruptible clarity.
Growing up in New Orleans, Fortner began playing the piano at the age of 7. He received his Bachelor of Music from the Oberlin Conservatory and his Master of Music in Jazz Performance from the Manhattan School of Music (MSM). He has held masterclasses at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA), Purdue University, Lafayette Summer Music Workshop, Belmont University, and the Oberlin Conservatory.
The singer was born in London in 1941. Her concerts with Roland Kirk in the late 1960s at London's Ronnie Scott's Club years are legendary.
She performed with Mike Westbrook and Michael Garrick, sang in the ensembles of John Surman, Kenny Wheeler, Mike Gibbs and John Taylor
In 1971 she was voted best singer in the Melody Maker Jazz Poll and recorded her own album "Edge of Time",
In the late 1970s, together with pianist John Taylor and trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, she founded the group Azimuth, described by The Times's Richard Williams as "one of the most imaginatively conceived and at the finest balance of all contemporary chamber jazz groups."
Azimuth has released several albums on the ECM label (the first three of which were re-released as a CD box set).
She wrote lyrics to compositions by Ralph Towner and brazilian composers Egberto Gismonti and Ivan Lins.
Her CD 'Like Song, Like Weather' with pianist John Taylor was recorded by Don Heckman in the Los Angeles Times as "... an excellent example of state-of-the-art, imaginative, practically undefined singing".
Jeff Ballard & Larry Grenadier
The drummer´s musical inspiration and drive was sparked by listening to musical legends ranging from Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald, and Antonio Carlos Jobim, to The Beatles, Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix. His exposure to multiple genres of music and the types of playing required for each enabled him to develop his foundation and understanding of music and planted the seeds from which his own varied approach to playing grew.
Ballard began playing drums at the age of 14 and while attending community college, began the journey of being a musician, playing in college ensembles and gigs around Santa Cruz and the Northern California region. At the age of 25, Ballard began an educational journey no college could match. He went on the road for eight months annually from 1988 to 1990 with Ray Charles, backing one of music’s biggest stars, perfecting his time feels and tempos from playing with Charles nightly on the bandstand for three years.
In 1990 Ballard moved to New York and jumped into the transformative scene that was developing there at the time. He began collaborating with Kurt Rosenwinkel, Brad Mehldau, Mark Turner, Joshua Redman, and Ben Allison, among others who were mixing jazz tradition with their own influences, ranging from Middle Eastern rhythms to electronica and modern hip hop.
Ballard’s past and present recording sessions and touring associates read like a who’s who of jazz. To name a select few: Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, Joshua Redman, Kurt Rosenwinkel, and Brad Mehldau. His present work continues with the Brad Mehldau Trio, as co-leader of collective group FLY (featuring Mark Turner, Ballard, and Larry Grenadier) and with his own groups The Jeff Ballard Trio and Jeff Ballard Fairgrounds.
He is one of the most renowned bassists of contemporary jazz. For three decades he has been a world-renowned soloist and sideman. His tone: immediately recognizable. His game: sensitive, imaginative and full of creative curiosity.
He has long been a member of the bands of pianist Brad Mehldau and guitarist Pat Metheny, and has collaborated on numerous albums by renowned artists including Paul Motian, Charles Lloyd, Enrico Rava, Danilo Perez, Chris Potter, Joshua Redman and Kurt Rosenwinkel. With his own trio Fly he released three albums and also appeared on the five albums of his wife, the well-known singer-songwriter Rebecca Martin.
"I am very aware of the balance between a studied approach to music and a more original, instinctive understanding of the way music works," Grenadier explains. "Having access to technology is useful for being able to communicate and express yourself musically. But music is about intuition and emotion. Compassion, strength, flexibility and perseverance are all important qualities when making music, but the most important thing is the ability to listen."
Gutenberg Jazz Collective 2021
Eva Swiderski (GER) - vocals
Ali Watson (UK) - bass
Ethan Furman (US) - drums
Julius McGill van Rhee (GER) - sax
Svetlana Marinchenko (RUS) - piano